Thursday, August 29, 2013

Colorado 14ers the Hard Way

The North Face of Longs Peak and the Old Cables Route
Longs Peak at sunrise
Tired of the crowds on Colorado's 14ers? Bored by the standard routes on most of them anyway? Here is an interesting ticklist that provides a unique and much more challenging way to reach the summit of Colorado's 14ers. For some mountains that boast several worthy technical candidates, I have provided a "regular" option and a "legend" option. Anyone who climbs all of the routes on this list by the "legend" option is certainly worthy of the title. (Should anyone complete this trip and want to write about it, I would love to hear your story. Email us at If the mountain has other pages in the Colorado Mountaineering database (including mountain profiles, featured routes or trip reports) you can click on the mountain to find these. It is also worth noting that the following  is the "59 List" which includes the 53 "ranked" 14ers plus six common additions (noted in the list with an "*"). Also included is Sunlight Spire, another unofficial peak that is not a 14er by the traditional 1929 datum. Here they are in order of height:

(note: the elevations are based on the customary 1929 datum. The 1988 datum, thought to be more accurate, raises the elevation from 3-8 feet on each peak. Interestingly, however, the mountaineering world most commonly refers to the heights of these peaks by the old datum calibration)

1. Mount Elbert (14,433' or 4401 m)
Box Creek Couloir (class 2+/moderate snow)- This mellow to moderate snow climb on the east face of Colorado's tallest mountain provides the most challenging way to climb Mt. Elbert. Start as for the North Mount Elbert trail and veer onto the face from around treeline. This also makes for a good, steep ski descent.

2. Mount Massive (14,421' or 4396 m)
North Massive Traverse (class 3)- traversing from "North Massive" to Mount Massive requires some loose, exposed class 3 climbing and is the most technically challenging route on the Massive's massif. Start as for the West Ridge route but veer toward North Massive at around 13,500'. After reaching North Massive you begin the traverse to Mount Massive. This is where the class 3 terrain lies.

3. Mount Harvard (14,420' or 4395 m)
The Rabbits (class 5.7)- the direct traverse from Mt. Harvard to Mt. Columbia provides a unique and technical route in a range that is otherwise known for being easy. Doing the traverse from Columbia to Harvard requires a short pitch of technical class 5.7 climbing. If you do the traverse  from Harvard to Columbia you can rappel this pitch.

4. Mount Blanca (14,345' or 4372 m)
Gash Ridge (class 5.4)- Gash Ridge is the east ridge of Mount Blanca. It is a long, exposed traverse, and while the climb itself isn't particularly long, it is very committing and loose. Caution is paramount to a successful climb, as is cooperative weather.

Legend: Ormes Buttress (class 5.6)- Ormes Buttress climbs the Blanca's northeast face. The route is reported as decent but plauged by loose rock and bad protection. This route has not seen many ascents in recent years. Still there is quality here. Retreat is difficult and be prepared to do lots of 4th and low 5th class climbing.

*4a. "North Massive" (14,340' or 4370 m)
North Massive Traverse (class 3)- As for Mount Massive, this is the most challenging way to climb the "North Massive," an un-ranked 14er that has 280' of topographical prominence making it just short of achieving "rank" by typical Colorado standards. Traversing from "North Massive" to Mount Massive requires some loose, exposed class 3 climbing. Start as for the West Ridge route but veer toward North Massive at around 13,500'. After reaching North Massive you begin the traverse to Mount Massive. This is where the class 3 terrain lies.

5. La Plata Peak (14,336' or 4369 m)
Ellingwood Ridge (class 3)- Ellingwood Ridge is a classic and excellent class 3 climb. In my opinion it is one of the best routes on any Colorado 14er at the class 3 level. When you climb the standard Northwest Ridge, Ellingwood is obvious. It is essentially the northeast ridge of the mountain, though it curves across the entire northern slope. It is log, mostly solid, and famous, as it is named after famous Colorado mountaineer Albert Ellingwood.

6. Uncompahgre (14,309' or  4361 m)
West Face (class 2, moderate snow)- The different snow couloirs on the west face of this gentle giant probably provide the most technical challenge for the more advanced mountaineer. In good conditions, there are several options, all of which are similar in terms of technical difficulty, but some are longer than others. There is the possibility of a direct finish from the central couloir that involves climbing some gnarly, manky class 4 (your Legend challenge) up the northern end of the summit cliffs. This option may be ill-advised due to the rock quality, though the position is incredible.

7. Crestone Peak (14,294' or 4356 m)
Peak/Needle Traverse (5.easy)- The Crestone Peak/Crestone Needle Traverse is one of the classic Alpine traverses of Colorado. It is exciting and exposed and requires some route-finding and semi-technical climbing that most choose to do unroped. This traverse is a significant step in difficulty from either of the standard routes.

Legend: North Pillar (5.8)- The North Pillar of Crestone Peak is an infrequently climbed but viable Sangre De Cristo route on what is arguably one of Colorado's most dramatic 14ers. This route has some issues with runouts and loose rock and is not as classic as the Ellingwood Arete on its twin, Crestone Needle, but it is a viable and exciting alpine climb.

8. Mount Lincoln (14,286' or 4354 m)
Lincoln Ampitheatre (class 2+)- It is hard to make much of Lincoln, but this route is a way to see Lincoln from a direction other than Kite Lake and is probably more difficult than the standard DeCaLiBron route.

9. Grays Peak (14,270' or 4349 m)
Lost Rat Couloir (class 2, moderate snow)- The Lost Rat Couloir is a surprisingly good alternative to the busy and tame Gray's Peak trail. In good conditions this route is an excellent initiation into the world of snow couloir climbing.

10. Mount Antero (14,269' or 4349 m)
North Ridge (class 2, moderate snow)- Antero is another mountain it is hard to make much of. This route has little to recommend unless the snow conditions are ideal. Beware! This is a known avalanche chute! If the snow is right, it can be fun. When the snow is gone, it is rotten and ill-advised. Acceptable alternative: Though it is not technically harder than the standard route, either Little Browns or Browns Creek offer off-the-beaten path alternatives that are worthy of this list because they require considerably more distance and elevation gain than the traditional route, thus "harder".

11. Torreys Peak (14,267' or 4348 m)
Kelso Ridge (class 3)- Kelso Ridge is a worthy adversary for the 14er enthusiast that wants more than the over-crowded Grays/Torreys standard. Look down on the crowds with contempt on this classic class 3 line. Kelso follows the northeast ridge of Torreys and forms the right-hand skyline for much of the Grays Peak trail standard route.

12. Castle Peak (14,265' or 4347 m)
Castle Couloir (class 2, moderate snow)- Though this route shares the same approach, it is a considerable step-up from the standard Northeast Ridge.

Legend: West Ridge (class 3)- This long route take the Conundrum Hot Springs trail to the Conundrum Hot Springs. This route is probably best done as a backpack. Enjoy the hot springs (don't expect solitude in most seasons and keep in mind that water quality at the springs themselves has been called into question recently) and ascend a loose, adventures route up the west ridge. You can also climb "Castleabra," one of Colorado's 200 highest peaks.

13. Quandary Peak (14,265' or 4347 m)
Quandary Couloir (class 4, steep snow)- This couloir is on Quandary's northern side and provides an excellent and exciting route when in good conditions that is a stark contrast to the standard East Slopes route that is known for being easy.

Legend: Inwood Arete (5.5)- There are several ways to climb this "arete" and the difficulty and protection will vary depending on where you start.

14. Mount Evans (14,264' or 4347 m)
The Sawtooth (class 3-4)- This truly belongs here, as you typically make this classic traverse after climbing Mt. Bierstadt on your way to Evans. The Sawtooth is one of my favorite class 3 Colorado climbs, and should be on any Colorado mountaineer's list.

Legend: Summit Apron, 2nd Apron (class 5.7-5.8)- The summit Aprons on the north side of Mt. Evans have some amazing alpine rock climbing. This is a growing an developing area. Any of the routes on the 2nd Apron are good. The 2nd Apron Right Side (III 5.7) is probably the most frequently climbed. Add in that you can do these climbs with zero approach and you can see the appeal.

15. Longs Peak (14,255' or 4344 m)
Kiener's Route (5.4, moderate snow)- Kiener's Route is one of the most classic mountaineering routes on a peak literally covered in world-class lines. Kiener's route is the way to climb Longs unbelievable east face without taking on the Diamond directly. Kiener's has a little of everything: a tricky snow climb (The Lamb's Slide), huge exposure on the Broadway traverse, and several pitches of tricky class 5.4 climbing on the confusing terrain near the eastern edge of the world-famous Diamond.

Legend: The Diamond (IV 5.10)- Any one of the routes on the Diamond will certainly fulfill your qualifications for the Longs portion of your Legend title. The recommended routes would be The Casual Route (IV 5.10a), Pervertical Santucary (IV 5.10d), D7 (IV 5.11c), or Ariana (IV 5.12a) in order of difficulty, though there are quite a few others.

16. Wilson Peak (14,246' or 4342 m)
East Face (class 4, moderate snow)- An excellent snow climb with a longer than usual season. After the excellent snow climb (if conditions are good), you will have to take on the summit cap from a different angle than the standard route.

*16a. Cameron Peak (14,238' or 4339 m)
How can one make Cameron harder? I'd be happy if you skipped over and tagged it after climbing The Lincoln Amphitheater. Or perhaps you could climb it in the winter. Since Cameron is probably the weakest of the included unranked peaks, you could skip it altogether. You decide what makes you feel official on this one.

17. Shavano Peak (14,229' or 4337 m)
Angel of Shavano (class 2, easy snow)- This excellent, introductory-level snow climb is not as challenging as most of the other climbs on this list, but is still worthy because it ascends an excellent and historical feature and is more technically challenging than the standard route.

18. Mount Princeton (14,197' or 4327 m)
For the first time I am stumped. This is a hard one to make harder, there just arent many options and they really are all about the same in terms of technical difficulty. I propose three possibilities: doing the standard route but starting on foot at the bottom trailhead and not driving up to the radio tower (adds almost 2,000 vertical feet) or doing the Southwest Ridge route that, although is probably about the same in difficulty, is at least something different.

19. Mount Belford (14,197' or 4327 m)
Another tough one. Climb Belford and Oxford in the same day but by coming from Oxford after having climbed the East Ridge route (see subsequent entry).

20. Crestone Needle (14,197' or 4327 m)
Peak/Needle Traverse (5.easy)- The Crestone Peak/Crestone Needle Traverse is one of the classic Alpine traverses of Colorado. It is exciting and exposed and requires some route-finding and semi-technical climbing that most choose to do unroped. This traverse is a significant step in difficulty from either of the standard routes.

Legend: Ellingwood Ledges (5.7)- This is one of the most classic at best-known alpine climbs in Colorado and thus is a mandatory inclusion on this list. This historic route is named after Albert Ellingwood who first climbed it in 1925. This route is also particularly well-known since it was included in the famous book 50 Classic Climbs of North America.

21. Mount Yale (14,196' or 4327 m)
East Ridge (class 2)- For once I am truly stumped. This route is no harder than the standard route but it does gain 600 feet of additional elevation and is something different than the over-used Southwest Slopes standard route.

22. Mount Bross (14,177' or 4321 m)
Since currently there is no legal way to climb Mount Bross, I am going to leave this one essentially blank. Even if there were legal access to the summit, Bross is one of the most rounded and blobby of all Colorado's 14ers. A quick out-and-back during the DeCaLiBron would be more than enough for my tastes to qualify for this list. Move on to the next project....

23. Kit Carson Peak (14,165' 4317 m)
North Ridge (class 4)- This intimidating-looking ridge is probably best done from Willow Lake. The ridge is fairly direct though there are plenty of options for route finding. The rock is remarkably solid but nonetheless it is still important to be mindful of loose rock.

Legend: The Prow (5.8)- The Prow is one of Colorado's coolest and most unique technical 14er climbs. The Prow follows the exposed fin on the southwest ridge of the peak. While the protection on this strange conglomerate rock is not always ample, pulling on the knobs and bulges of the Crestone conglomerate is one of the most exhilarating experiences in the Colorado mountains, and this route is arguably the best. Despite its moderate rating, this climb is exposed and committing and certainly no place to be if you in-experienced (or in a storm).

*23a. El Diente (14,159' or 4316 m)
West Ridge (class 4)- The West Ridge route on El Diente is a long, more complicated and much more exposed route than either the common North Slopes (class 3, steep snow) or the North Buttress (class 4). Depending on the conditions the final mile of this route will include either a long, complicated traverse, or a long knife-edge scoot fest.

24. Maroon Peak (14,156' or 4315 m)
The Bell Chord Couloir (class 4, steep snow)- Though I don't really care which order you decided to do them in, for the purposes of this list I suggest climbing The Bell Chord and the Maroon>North Maroon Traverse as a "hard" way to climb both of these peaks.  Seemingly this would require two ascents, one of which would be, in part, a grueling repeat. With this in mind, I suggest the following: ascend the Bell Chord Couloir and climb each of the peaks, traversing across to hit both summits. Descend either of the standard routes.

25. Tabeguache Peak (14,155 or 4314 m)
Northeast Slopes (class 2)- This route isn't more difficult technically than either of the standard routes (via the now closed West Ridge or by traversing over from Mt. Shavano) but it is longer and more adventurous, requiring 17 miles of hiking and over 5,000 feet of elevation gain.

26. Mount Oxford (14,153' or 4313 )
East Ridge (class 2)- This route is not harder than the West Ridge route (which requires traversing over from Mt. Belford) but requires more distance. To complete this list you mist climb Oxford from the East Ridge, traverse over to Belford and back. Now that is a long day....

27. Mount Sneffels (14,150' or 4312 m)
Southwest Ridge (class 3)- The Southwest Ridge of Mount Sneffels is one of Colorado's best class 3 lines. It entails a lot of good scrambling, some exposure, and some loose rock. It is a less populated and higher quality version of the standard Southeast Ridge (class 2+) and a full grade level more difficult.

Alternative: Snake Couloir (class 3, steep snow)
The Snake Gully on Sneffels' dramatic Nouth Face, is one of Colorado's best moderate snow climbs on a 14er. The route winds its way like its namesake up the picturesque and rugged face. It is quiet compared to the routes on the mountain's southern side, and high quality couloir climbing for over 1,000 feet.

Legend: North Buttress (III 5.6)- The North Buttress is the premier technical route on Mt. Sneffels. It takes the steep ridge/buttress just to the left of the Snake Couloir. Expect loose rock, route-finding challenges, and some runout protection.

28. Mount Democrat (14,148' or 4312 m)
North Ridge (class 3)- This is a surprising scramble on a mountain that is known for being easy. While most routes on Democrat climb from a high trailhead at Kite Lake (12,000 feet) this climb is usually attempted from the other side of the mountain at Montgomery Reservoir (10,900 feet). There is some good scrambling here and some choss. Climb smart and careful and get to experience this mountain from a whole different perspective.

29. Capitol Peak (14,130' or 4306 m)
North Ridge of K2>Northeast Ridge Direct (class 5.easy)- From the Daly/Capitol saddle, follow the ridge direct instead of traversing down into the basin. This adds considerable class 4 to the standard route. Rejoin the standard route near K2 and follow it across the Knife Edge. Leave the standard route as it traverses out onto the East Face and follow the east ridge directly to the summit (low class 5).

Legend: Northwest Ridge (5.7 or 5.9)- The Northwest Ridge is an intimidating climb on an notorious mountain. The rock is loose and the terrain is very steep. It is generally accepted nowadays that the 5.9 start is better, as the rock is much more solid and the lower pitches are the best of the climb. This somewhat rarely climbed route is a Colorado classic for the worthy alpinist.

30. Pikes Peak (14,110' or 4301 m)
Y-Couloir (class 3, steep snow)- Pikes Peak at times feels like the gentle giant of Colorado 14ers, but it does have a wild side. The most challenging routes on Pikes all exist on the mountains North Face, which steepens in a set of inset couloirs near the mountain's summit. The Y-Couloir ascends a line on the western side of the mountain's most rugged face.

Snowmass from the West
31. Snowmass Mountain (14,092' or 4295 m)
S-Ridge (class 3)- The S-Ridge is an infrequently climbed and dangerous route on Snowmass Mountain. Since I believe it to be only slightly more difficult than the standard route and way less fun, I would also call climbing the standard route in the winter an acceptable alternative.

32. Windom Peak (14,087' or 4294 m)
Northwest Face (class 3, moderate snow)- This face is an inexact line up an impressive face that holds snow well into summer. It is more difficult and more involved than the standard West Ridge route.

33. Mount Eolus (14,084' or 4293 m)
South Ridge (class 4)- Though it uses the same Needleton approach, this route takes on Eolus by a whole different side. This ridge is longer and much more complicated than the standard Northeast Ridge, and is not climbed very often at all.

34. Challenger Point (14,081' or 4292 m)
Kirk Couloir (class 2, steep snow)- This quality snow climb is a step up in technical demand from the standard North Slopes route. The couloir itself is over 800 feet long and reaches around 50 degrees in steepness.

35. Mount Columbia (14,073' or 4289 m)
East Ridge (class 2)- The East Ridge isn't really harder than the standard West Slopes route, but it is longer and gains about 700 feet of additional elevation. My recommendation is to climb Columbia via this route than traverse to Harvard via the Rabbits. This will complete your requirements for these peaks for this list, but it isn't particularly convenient since both routes are better accessed from different trailheads. With a car-shuttle it is possible to go in from Three Elks trailhead and come out the North Cottonwood trail. This might be your best bet to knock both of these routes in one day/journey.
North Face of Missouri in July

36. Mount Missouri (14,067' or 4288 m)
North Face (class 3, moderate snow)- The North Face of Mount Missouri offers an exciting and different way to take on this rugged Sawatch gem. From high in Missouri Gulch choose one of the couloirs on the obvious north face and climb it to the top. Depending on which couloir you choose you will join the Northwest Ridge for the final traverse to the summit.

37. Humboldt Peak (14,064' or 4287 m)
Since there are no routes on Humboldt more challenging than the standard West Ridge from South Colony Lakes, I am stumped once again. I would suggest climbing it in the winter, but that necessitates a separate trip to a tightly compacted region. Logistically it makes little sense. Just make it to the summit, okay.

Legend: the true legend will take the extra step and make something of Humboldt by climbing it in the winter.

38. Mount Bierstadt (14,060' or 4285 m)
East Ridge (class 3)- The East Ridge is an excellent way make more of a peak that is generally considered to be easy. The following is the recommended (and quite hard) way to satisfy both Mt. Evans and Mt. Bierstadt in one shot. Climb the East Ridge to the summit of Bierstadt. Traverse to Evans via the Sawtooth Ridge (class 3). Lots of distance and lots of scrambling to get to this point, but now it is time for the long descent. Follow the Mt. Evans road down to 13,400 feet. At the apex of a prominent switchback, descend south towards the saddle between Mt. Evans and Mt. Epaulet (13,523 feet). Turn west and descend steeply through a notch following Mt. Evans' Southwest Slopes (class 2) route. Connect with the Abyss Lake trail around 12,000 feet and follow it 6.5 miles back to your car at Scott Gomer Creek. Phew! Or, if that sounds like too big of a day, climb the Sawtooth and the East Ridge separately.

*38a. Conundrum Peak (14,060' or 4285 m)
Conundrum Couloir (class 3, steep snow)- Conundrum Couloir is one of the better and more defined couloirs in the Elk Range. From high in Montezuma Basin, climb the steep couloir for 5oo feet to the saddle between Conundrum's two summits. There is often a cornice near the top.

Legend- climb the couloir in the winter and ski down it.

39. Sunlight Peak (14,059' or 4285 m)
West Ridge (class 4)- This excellent San Juan classic should be a must do for any true San Juan aficionado. This is a more difficult and involved way to climb Sunlight than the standard South Slopes route. This route has more class 3 scrambling and more class 4 scrambling than the South Slopes. And you still have to deal with the summit cap just the same.

40. Handies Peak (14,048' or 4282 m)
Tour De Grizzly (class 2, moderate snow)- This climb, listed as "Tour De Grizzly" (numbered 28R9 V1) in Gerry Roach's Colorado Fourteeners: From Hikes to Climbs, ascends a long snow gully to Point 12,792. From here you traverse along the ridge over several strenuous bumps to the summit.

41. Culebra Peak (14,047' or 4281 m)
Unfortunately there is only one option for climbing this mountain for now due to private property. In order to boycott what I believe are exorbitantly high prices to climb this mountain (over $100 nowadays), I recommend deleting this mountain from your 14er list...for now.

42. Mount Lindsey (14,042' or 4280 m)
North Couloir (class 2, moderate snow)- Another good snow climb and a way to see Lindsey from a different perspective. This climb ascends a relatively mild couloir directly to the summit. On descent, follow the class 3 Northwest Ridge variation to the standard North Face for full value.

43. Ellingwood Point (14,042' or 4280 m)
Southwest Ridge (class 3)- An excellent and more difficult alternative to the class 2 standard South Face route. This awesome scramble is not horribly difficult but is worth its weight in fun.

Legend: North Ridge (5.easy)- This scary route makes quite a challenge out of Ellingwood Point and offers quite a little challenge.

*43a. North Eolus (14,039' or 4279 m)
This short, unofficial summit does have much power or many options. Just climb it and move on....

44. Little Bear (14,037' or 4278 m)
Northwest Face (5.easy)- Though you do not have to face the dreaded Hourglass, this route is long, ore sustained and more dangerous than the standard West Ridge (Hourgalss) route. An acceptable alternative would be the treacherous and brutally long Southwest Ridge, which I also believe is more difficult than the Hourglass.

45. Mount Sherman (14,036' or 4278 m)
Another lump of a mountain without many options. Climb Mount Sherman in the winter by any route.

46. Redcloud Peak (14,034' or 4277 m)
West Gullies (class 2, moderate snow)- When conditions are good there are several options for an easy snow climb that are definitely more challenging than the standard Northeast Ridge.

47. Pyramid Peak (14,018' or 4273 m)
Northwest Ridge (class 4)- Though Pyramid's standard Northeast Ridge route is probably more difficult than several of the route on this list, there is a way to make Pyramid harder. Starting from the same basin at 12,000 feet, this route veers away from the standard route and takes on the mountain from the other side.

48. Wilson Peak (14,017' or 4272 m)
As of now there is only one syndicated route on Wilson Peak, the standard West Ridge. You could make it more of a challenge by seeking out a lesser-known route, pioneering your own new route, or climbing it in the winter. But then, do you climb Wilson Peak and Mount Wilson both in winter? Or do separate trips to the area?

49. Wetterhorn Peak (14,015' or 4271 m)
East Ridge (class 4)- Climb the slightly longer and more difficult East Ridge of Wetterhorn which circles around an still enjoys the famous summit pitch of Wetterhorn's standard Southeast Ridge.

50. San Luis Peak (14,014' or 4271 m)
Pointfest (class 3)- This nifty idea comes from Gerry Roach's Colorado's Fourteeners: From Hikes to Climbs, a book that any 14er aficionado should posses. You will find most of these routes in that book. In this case, Roach numbered the route 26R2 V1 in the third edition. In my mind there is no other way for an aspiring Legend or anyone attempting 14ers the Hard Way than this. This huge traverse is a variation of the South Ridge that follows instead a ridge along the Continental Divide up and over four summits, three of which are over 13,000 feet and two of which are ranked.

*50a. North Maroon Peak (14,014' or 4271 m)
Maroon/North Maroon Traverse (5.easy)- The Bell Cord and the Traverse are interchangeable. I recommend combining the two by climbing the Bell Cord and traversing between the two summits once on the saddle. This makes for a tough day worthy of the Hard Way list.

51. Mount of the Holy Cross (14,005' or 4269 m)
Cross Couloir (class 3, steep now)- This classic line is famous for two reasons: its quality and intensity as a snow couloir and ski descent, and its association with the namesake religious feature (the climb ascends the center of the cross).

Legend:  A mountaineering legend would climb the cross and ski back down it.... If you are a legend but not a skiing legend then climb both this and either Halo Ridge or Angelica preferably but not obligatorily on the same trip.

52. Huron Peak (14,003' or 4268 m)
East Slopes (class 2)- Though a 4WD vehicle can shorten this route to as little as 5 miles, it is the most difficult terrain on an established Huron route and from the standard trailhead at Rockdale (9,940 feet) it is almost two miles longer than the easier Northwest Slopes route. The other appealing aspect of this climb is that it takes on Huron from the completely opposite side as the other, more popular routes.

53. Sunshine Peak (14,001' or 4267 m)
Northwest Ridge (class 2+)- This route is a little more difficult than the standard Northeast Ridge. A recomended link-up would be to combine this with Redcloud's West Gullies route to satisfy your "Hard Way" criteria for both these peaks at once. Hard to say if doing the traverse one way or the other is more difficult, that might depend more on your strengths and/or weaknesses.

*53a. Sunlight Spire (14,000' or 4266 m)
Legend: Standard Route (5.10c)- According to the 1988 datum, Sunlight Spire just reaches the 14,000' mark. Though it doesn't have 300' of prominence and is not an official 14er (or even ranked at all), it is the hardest peak in the state to reach the summit of by the easiest route and it perhaps the most airy and astounding 14,000' perch in the Lower 48. How could any self-respecting Legend not climb this?

*indicates a mountain that does not meet the qualifications for being "ranked" (at least 300 feet of topographical prominence)

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